Where Can I Find and Publish Preprints?

There are many preprint servers for the health and life sciences where you can submit your own preprint, and access and comment on published preprints. Uploaded content undergoes a basic screening for appropriateness, plagiarism, and health or security risks before being publicly posted. Most sites assign DOIs (a unique digital object identifier) to each preprint, and some sites allow updated versions to be uploaded.

If you are planning to upload a preprint for a manuscript that will also be submitted for publication, see Which Journals and Funders Allow Preprints?

Preprint servers for publishing preprints
  • arXiv (physics, math, computer science, quantitative biology, statistics) arXiv was the first preprint server and has over 1.5 million preprints. Started in 1991 and hosted by Cornell University. Pronounced "archive", and the inspiration for the naming of several subsequent servers.
  • bioRxiv (biological sciences). Began operations in 2013, operated by Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory (CSHL). The largest server in its field with over 50,000 preprints, bioRxiv links from preprint to published articles and integrates with selected journal submission systems.
  • medRxiv (health sciences). Launched June 2019, founded by CSHL, Yale University and BMJ, and hosted by CSHL. Includes subject areas for Dentistry, Nursing, Pharmacology, and Physical Therapy.
  • OSF Preprints (multiple disciplines). Open Science Framework offers 8000 unique preprints in ten broad disciplines Open source and produced by the non-profit Center for Open Science. Includes an integrated search interface across major preprint servers.
  • PeerJ PrePrints (medicine, biology, computer science). 5000 preprints from the open access publisher PeerJ.
  • Preprints.org (multiple disciplines). 10,000 preprints in all STEM fields. Produced by the open access publisher MDPI.
  • PsyArXiv (psychological sciences). Over 5000 preprints; uses OSF Preprints infrastructure.
  • Research Square (multiple disciplines). Over 30,000 preprints through partner publishers such as Springer Nature and Cambridge University Press.
  • SocArXiv (social sciences). 4000 preprints; uses OSF Preprints infrastructure. 
  • SSRN's Medical Research Network (MedRN). Accepted and working papers in numerous subject areas. Includes submissions to The Lancet journals.   
Discovery tools for searching for preprints

Use the following resources to search preprints from multiple sources:

  • Dimensions Analytics database includes preprints from multiple sources. After running a search, filter results by Publication Type -> Preprint. Log in with your UCSF account to access paid subscription features.
  • Preprint Archive Search from OSF – searches over 2 million preprints from arXiv, bioRxiv, OSF Preprints and its partners, PeerJ Preprints, and Preprints.org
  • PubMed and PubMed Central now include preprints related to COVID-19 research resulting from NIH funding, from these sites: medRxiv, bioRxiv, ChemRxiv, arXiv, Research Square, and SSRN. To see preprints, create your query or filter your search results with the preprint article type. Find out more about this pilot.
  • search.bioPreprint from University of Pittsburgh - searches arXiv's quantitative biology section, bioRxiv, medRxiv, F1000Research, PeerJ Preprints, Preprints.org, and Wellcome Open Research

Google Scholar includes preprint servers in its search results, but does not identify them as such so they can be difficult to discern. Below an article citation, click on "all x versions". Scan the resulting list for a preprint server URL, e.g. "[HTML] biorxiv.org".

Visit our Getting Published page for more information or to connect with a scholarly communication expert.

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